When you are looking for more ways to save money, the best course of action is always to cut back on spending. Once you cut out all of the unneeded expenses from your life, you still may be paying more than you should be. Some of those unnecessary expenses are coming from completely necessary services. Unavoidable things such as internet, cellphone, security, trash and even water services can cost you a pretty penny, but they don’t have to. Here is how to master the art of lowering your bills:
1. Know what to say when bargaining – Calling companies directly is a good way get things started, but be mindful of what you say and how it will be received. Never come straight out and ask for a cheaper rate. Ask them how they can help you save money, or what discounts are available.
2. Ignore promotions – In a past life I worked for an ISP and TV provider who liked to solve problems by covering them in free-trials. You called for a reason, so don’t get distracted by six-months of premium channels for free. Be aware of diversion techniques that are used by nearly every customer service representative.
3. Be polite – This is a big one. In nearly every industry there are ways you could be paying less, but the person on the other side of the phone gets to decide how much. No matter how frustrated you get with the wait times or hard to understand accents, you have to play nice. Build a rapport and the get representative on your side.
4. If you are a good customer, threaten them – No I don’t mean with physical harm. The only way you could ever hurt a business is in their wallet, so that is what you have to target. If you are a longtime customer it is as simple as saying you might take your business elsewhere. The tune of the conversation will change in an instant.
5. Have someone else do it – For those who lack a silver tongue or a cool head, there are a number of services available that will attempt to lower bills on your behalf. Services that call companies on your behalf (using some of your personal information to prove as such) to try and lower your payments. If they are successful, then you owe them a percentage of the savings they successfully negotiated. That may not be a bad deal considering you were going to keep paying full price anyway.